The 2020 CEAP C.O.N.G.R.E.S.S held last September 21 – 25, 2020, is the first digital convention that CEAP organized after the cancellation of the physical National Convention in Davao City amidst the pandemic.
The CEAP leadership’s desire to bring together the whole CEAP Community into a meaningful experience has led to the creation of the online assembly coining it, CONGRESS – which stands for Community Online National Gathering for Renewed and Empowered Stewards in Schools with the theme: Missio: Dialogue of Faith & Life and Culture Beyond Creed, Beyond Borders, Beyond COVID.
The theme is consistent with CEAP’s vision of a world transformed, a Philippines renewed by people educated in the principles of Communio and Service as taught and lived by Our Lord Jesus Christ and shaped by the missionary mandate of the Catholic Church.
The first day of the CEAP CONGRESS was the Annual General Membership Meeting of school heads and superintendents last September 21, 2020. During the meeting, CEAP launched the Research Journal entitled “Perspectives” in partnership with REX Publishing Inc. The Philippine Catholic Schools Standards (PCSS) Technical Working Group also provided updates on the progress of developing the PCSS for Higher Education which is the newest addition in the CEAP Commissions and Committees.
The second day started with a Eucharistic Celebration presided by Most. Rev. Roberto O. Gaa, D.D. CEAP also presented a video tribute featuring the words of encouragement and hope from the parents, students, and fellow teachers. Included in the video was an encouraging message of hope from Archbishop Socrates Villegas. One of the Day 2 highlights was the conferment of the Pro-Deo et Patria Award to Fr. Roderick C. Salazar, Jr. SVD.
The third day started with a Eucharistic Celebration presided by Fr. Elmer G. Dizon as he shared a beautiful reflection: Take nothing but trust in the hospitality of people. Trust in being welcomed. Trust in sharing. The second part of Day 3 was a series of learning sessions focused on the first three domains of the Philippine Catholic Schools Standards.
The first session on Catholic Identity and Mission was a presentation by Dr. Pilar I. Romero entitled Educating to Fraternal Humanism. The second session focused on Learning Environment wherein Fr. Norman R. Peña JR., SSP, PhD shared his insights on the topic of Place-Based Learning in Philippine Catholic Education: Communicating and tapping the power of place as an effective and alternative LMS. The third and last session of the day focused on Learner Development, Former CHED Chairperson, Dr. Patricia B. Licuanan, was invited to present and focus on Educating the Whole Person.
The fourth day started with Eucharistic Celebration presided by Fr. Alain P. Manalo, CEAP Corporate Secretary. The rest of the day continued with the presentations on the last three domains of the PCSS. The fourth session on Leadership and Governance was done by Fr. Roberto C Yap, SJ with a presentation entitled Transitional Leadership in a VUCA World. The fifth session on Operational Vitality was discussed by Dr. Ma. Encarnacion A. Dychangco, RN, PhD with a presentation entitled Forging Partnerships for the Mission. The last session was a presentation by Dr. Brian S. Bantugan on the PCSS Domain of Research and Community Engagement.
The fifth and last day of the CONGRESS started with an invocation led by the St. Scholastica’s College Alumnae Glee Club. It was followed by the Keynote Message delivered by the Prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, member of the Congregation for Catholic Education and the Pontifical Council for Inter-religious dialogue, His Eminence Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle. CEAP unveiled the CEAP@80 logo in celebration of the 500th year of the coming of Christianity in the Philippines and the 80th year of CEAP. CEAP Executive Director, Mr. Jose Allan I. Arellano gave his synthesis of the CONGRESS right after. Next was the awarding of the Jubilarians and Recognition of the New Member-School.
The highlight of the event was the announcement of the newly elected officers and the awarding of the outgoing board members. The outgoing CEAP President, Fr. Elmer G. Dizon gave his message of thanks. The turnover the CEAP Mace and the leadership of CEAP to our newly-elected President, Sr. Ma. Marissa R. Viri, RVM followed next. Sr. Viri gave her acceptance speech. The Oathtaking of the new Board came right after. The event ended with the singing of the CEAP Hymn “Huwarang Katoliko’.
All the materials used during the event can be downloaded at www.ceap.org.ph and all videos can be watched again in the official CEAP Facebook page and CEAP Channel on YouTube.
[Article submitted by Dianne D. Balios, Catholic Educational Association of the Philippines]